Top 10 metro areas where housing prices have increased in the U.S.

Although housing prices are not increasing by much in many parts of the country, any uptick in home values is a welcome change to home owners in those areas. Housing prices increased by 2 to 6 percent in the top metro areas during the last 12 months.

According to data released by the Federal Housing Finance Agency for the period between the 4th quarter of 2009 to the 4th quarter of 2010, house prices increased in 89 of the 309 metro areas. That's not even 1 in 3 areas that saw an increase in home values.

Even in the top 10 list, 2 metro areas saw home values plummet from the previous quarter - Lubbock, Texas and San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, California.

Merced, California, coming in at number 9, has seen home values decline by nearly 60% in the last 5 years. It may seem that this list would be heavily represented by those metros that have seen a significant decline in home values in the last few years, like Merced. However this is not the case.

The only other metros in the list that have seen house value decline compared to 5 years ago are Bay City and Saginaw-Saginaw Township North, Michigan and San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, California.

Bay City, Michigan

Bay City, Michigan had the best average increase in house prices for the 12 month period of 6.1%. For the quarter, this metro area house values gained 1.51%, however in the last 5 years, house prices have declined by as much as 14% on average.

According to FHFA data, the last time home prices increased in Bay City on a year over year basis was 4 years ago in the 4th quarter of 2006, an increase of 0.63%.

Current home prices in Bay City equals home values seen there in the 4th quarter of 2000.

Monroe, Louisiana

Monroe, Louisiana had the second best average change in house prices for the year of 3.24%. For the quarter, this metro area's house prices increased 0.63% and in the last 5 years, house prices have gained on average as much as 13%.

Cape Coral-Fort Myers, Florida

Cape Coral-Fort Myers, Florida had the best average increase in house prices for the quarter. From the 3rd quarter of 2010 to the 4th quarter, this metro area's house prices increased by 4.63%.

Michigan and California have the most metros on the best 10 list

This top 10 list has metros from most parts of the country - south, midwest, west.

Michigan and California are the only states with more than one metro area on the list. Both states have 2.

The list of metro areas that have seen the highest average house price increase from 2009 4th quarter to 2010 4th quarter.

Rank Metro Change from
Previous Quarter
Change from
Last Year
1 Bay City, MI 1.51 6.10
2 Monroe, LA 0.63 3.24
3 Sioux City, IA-NE-SD 0.45 3.20
4 Saginaw-Saginaw Township North, MI 1.53 3.14
5 Decatur, IL 0.74 2.96
6 Bloomington, IN 0.84 2.47
7 Lubbock, TX -0.07 2.20
8 San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA -0.66 2.18
9 Merced, CA 0.64 2.16
10 Fargo, ND-MN 1.23 2.07
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Mike The Realtor

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Mike O'Neil
RE/MAX Anchor Realty
North Port, FL